Ireland’s U19 Men’s and U19 Women’s teams have had their upcoming qualifiers cancelled after UEFA’s Executive Committee took the decision to call-off the 2021 UEFA Women’s and Men’s Under-19 Championships due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The UEFA Executive Committee took into account Government restrictions currently in place across Europe and their effect on the transportation of teams and staging of mini-tournaments.
The cancellation impacts Tom Mohan’s Republic of Ireland U19s and Dave Connell’s Republic of Ireland WU19s who had been scheduled to play at the end of March and in early April respectively.
The U19 Men’s team were set to take on Estonia, Bosnia & Herzegovina and Poland in Longford next month with the WU19s preparing to face England, Greece and Kosovo in Greece in early April.
FAI Chief Executive Officer Jonathan Hill said: “This is disappointing but not unexpected news for Tom Mohan, Dave Connell and their players who have been planning and looking forward to these games for so long now. We respect the UEFA decision and we will work closely with UEFA and Government now to facilitate a return for our underage international teams as soon as it is feasible.”
In a statement UEFA said: “Although it is unfortunate that no youth competitions can take place in the current season, the health and safety of young athletes must be prioritized in the current circumstances.”
These latest cancellations follow a decision taken by UEFA last December to call-off both the Men’s and Women’s 2021 European Under-17 Championship Qualifiers. Colin O’Brien’s U17 Men’s team were due to host three qualifiers in Ireland before the tournament was cancelled while James Scott’s WU17 were also in line to host Portugal, Macedonia and Wales.